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Why things are the way they are.

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by Roland, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. Jun 3, 2008 at 9:51 AM
    #1
    Roland

    Roland [OP] My other ride has sails

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    Here is a look into the corporate mind that is very interesting,
    educational, historical, completely true, and hysterical all at the
    same time:

    The US standard railroad gauge (width between the two rails) is 4
    feet, 8.5 inches. That's an exceedingly odd number. Why was that gauge
    used?
    Because that's the way they built them in England, and the US
    railroads were built by English expatriates.
    Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines
    were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and
    that's the gauge they used.
    Why did "they" use that gauge then? Because the people who built the
    tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building
    wagons which used that wheel spacing.
    Okay! Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing?
    Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would
    break on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because
    that's the spacing of the wheel ruts.
    So who built those old rutted roads? The first long distance roads in
    Europe (and England) were built by Imperial Rome for their legions.
    The roads have been used ever since. And the ruts in the roads? Roman
    war chariots first formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to
    match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots
    were made for (or by) Imperial Rome, they were all alike in the matter
    of wheel spacing. The United States standard railroad gauge of 4
    feet, 8.5 inches derives from the original specification for an
    Imperial Roman war chariot. Specifications and bureaucracies live
    forever. So the next time you are handed a specification and wonder
    what horse's ass came up with it, you may be exactly right, because
    the Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough to
    accommodate the back ends of two war horses. Thus, we have the answer
    to the original question.


    Now the twist to the story..............
    There's an interesting extension to the story about railroad gauges
    and horses' behinds. When we see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch
    pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the
    main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or SRBs. The SRBs are
    made by Thiokol at their factory in Utah. The engineers who designed
    the SRBs might have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs
    had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site. The
    railroad line from the factory had to run through a tunnel in the
    mountains. The SRBs had to fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is
    slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track is
    about as wide as two horses' behinds. So, the major design feature of
    what is arguably the world's most advanced transportation system was
    determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a Horse's Ass!
     
  2. Jun 3, 2008 at 9:53 AM
    #2
    eordonez

    eordonez Living vicariously through mjp2

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    very nice roland, and funny as hell too.....
     
  3. Jun 3, 2008 at 3:03 PM
    #3
    sawdust

    sawdust Unapologetic Texan

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    So, nd, how wide are you?
     
  4. Jun 4, 2008 at 7:33 AM
    #4
    nd

    nd Radical Town. It's a hell of a place!

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    not as wide as your horse
     
  5. Jun 4, 2008 at 1:18 PM
    #5
    sawdust

    sawdust Unapologetic Texan

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    That's WEAK, man. I got rep for my last post :D
     
  6. Jun 4, 2008 at 1:27 PM
    #6
    Toy4Life

    Toy4Life 668: The Neighbor of the Beast

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    Good story Roland.....I like that.
     
  7. Jun 4, 2008 at 1:31 PM
    #7
    nd

    nd Radical Town. It's a hell of a place!

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    oh yeah? well how many little green bars do you have
     
  8. Jun 4, 2008 at 1:40 PM
    #8
    sawdust

    sawdust Unapologetic Texan

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    How many fingers am I holding up?
     
  9. Jun 4, 2008 at 1:48 PM
    #9
    nd

    nd Radical Town. It's a hell of a place!

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    14?
     
  10. Jun 8, 2008 at 8:36 AM
    #10
    4x4x4trd

    4x4x4trd My other ride weighs 200 tons

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    Working for the railroad for 30+ years really brings out your point. ;)
     
  11. Jun 8, 2008 at 9:44 AM
    #11
    danusa

    danusa Well-Known Member

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    As my old SMG. would say; out fucking standing!
    Of course, I would not say that myself.
     
  12. Jun 8, 2008 at 10:17 AM
    #12
    hondabuster

    hondabuster Active Member

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    Corporations are all the same. Im sure we could all relate a story or two about the blind stupidity of business in America. One of my favorite posters (hanging in my office), is this one. Im sure we can all agree on it.:)
    [​IMG]
     
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